I interview Pomona’s new city manager, only the second woman to have the job, and pay tribute to Larry Egan, an important figure downtown, whose memorial service I attended. Wednesday’s is an all-Pomona column, and probably my last for a while, as I really need to turn my attention again to San Bernardino and Riverside. But it was fun to be back on the beat. And my Starbucks column got people talking.
The Starbucks at the Mission Promenade building in downtown Pomona is due to close Feb. 15. That was noted in passing in a column last week just to get that out there. I’d happened to be in the cafe when the manager made the announcement. As promised, here’s more. I worked from the cafe on Monday afternoon to watch the flow of traffic. There have been incidents with homeless people, yet the cafe attracts a cross-section of Pomona. I tell you more in my Wednesday column.
In an emotional but mostly respectful meeting with 40 speakers, the City Council in Pomona OK’d a resolution for a Gaza ceasefire. “We’re doing what we can,” one member says. Many cities have ducked the issue, saying the matter isn’t in their jurisdiction. Can’t blame them, but I respect how Pomona handled it. That’s the subject of my Wednesday column, along with three other Pomona tidbits at the end.
For what it’s worth, this column was cranked out in three hours Tuesday morning/early afternoon to meet our early deadlines (and a lunch engagement). Due to how interesting the outcome of the meeting was, how many people spoke and how quickly I had to write, I relied more than usual on my overall sense of the proceedings rather than my copious notes.
At the City Council meeting Monday in Pomona, 15 people demanded the council take a stand about Gaza. Only one person brought up the local issue. Nevertheless, I delve into the payout to the former city manager. Also, I make my triumphant (?) return to a Pomona council meeting after four years away. That’s my slightly nostalgic Wednesday column.
The dA Center for the Arts in downtown Pomona is hosting possibly its most ambitious and well-attended exhibit ever, “Sounds of Pomona: Coming of Age in the Golden Era of Music, 1955-1975.” It’s a tribute to the city’s thriving music scene of the early rock era and its Latino-led bands who played at local dances. I’ve been to two of the events so far and they’ve been remarkably well-attended. I write about the effort in my Friday column.
A developer bought the former YMCA, a prominent building on Pomona’s Garey Avenue, in 2017. Finally it’s close to reopening after a renovation. I take a tour — prior to a Nov. 2 public tour — to see the work and hear about the plans, resulting in my Sunday column.
An old, rundown park in Pomona got a $2.7 million reinvention as an all-abilities playground, the first in the city. The park has a kind of crazy history, which I detail along with the makeover in my Wednesday column.
Unexpectedly, the buyers of the Frantz Cleaners property decided not to turn the buildings into offices but instead leased it to a Frantz employee to continue the business. That’s good news. Meanwhile, a Pomona reader is pleased to meet me, and Rancho Cucamonga’s Magic Lamp Inn is closed at least temporarily, its future uncertain. All that is in my Wednesday column.
With the switch to May from September, the LA County Fair is seeing a lot more long sleeves and jackets. Attendance was up over last year, a sign that fairgoers generally like the change. I write about that in my Sunday column, as well as how the fair has lowered its attendance count downwards pretty dramatically, and why, and what some of you had to say about Thummer upon the fair mascot’s 75th anniversary.
Known for its rooftop sign and “In by 10, Out by 4” motto, Frantz Cleaners in Pomona is closing June 7. Kay Richards, who’s owned the legacy business since 1970, is retiring and has sold the property. The business began in 1937 downtown and moved to Garey and Orange Grove in 1952, shortly before the freeway opened. I write about Frantz in my Wednesday column, as well as about Gloria Molina’s quilting at the LA County Fair.